ST. LOUIS, MO . . . New Line Theatre, “the bad boy of musical theatre,” is proud to announce that YEAST NATION: THE TRIUMPH OF LIFE, the world’s first bio-historical musical comedy, with book and lyrics by Greg Kotis, and music and lyrics by Mark Hollmann, the subversive geniuses behind the award-winning Broadway musical Urinetown, will be part of New Line’s 27th season, running in June 2018.
So what is Yeast Nation? Exactly what it sounds like.
It is the year 3,000,458,000 BC. The Earth’s surface is a molten mass of volcanic islands and undulating waves. The atmosphere is a choking fog lit by a dim red sun. And the mighty waters of the world are inhabited only by rocks, sand, salt, more rocks, a little silt, and the great society of salt-eating yeasts – yes, yeasts! – the world’s very first life form!
These single-cell salt-eaters are the only living creatures on earth, and they’re up against a food shortage, a strange new emotion called Love, and the oppression of a tyrannical yeast king. But when the king’s son ventures out of the known yeastiverse, the yeasts’ story – and ours – is changed forever.
The New York Times, said, “This is the rare satire that knows exactly what it’s doing and commits to it.” Variety wrote, “Ostensibly, it’s about the world’s earliest life forms, but it’s really a riff on individual human aspiration, love, and theatrical storytelling. While it’s an easily recognizable sibling to Urinetown, this show possesses enough uniqueness and consistent cleverness to forge its own path.”
Yeast Nation has been produced four times so far, at the Perseverance Theatre in Juneau, Alaska, in 2007; at the American Theater Company in Chicago in 2009; at the New York International Fringe Festival in 2011; and at the Ray of Light Theatre in San Francisco in 2014. The team has continued working on the show.
Metro East native Mark Hollmann grew up in Fairview Heights Illinois, where he graduated from Belleville Township High School East in 1981.
New Line Artistic director Scott Miller saw Urinetown in November 2001, right after it moved to Broadway. He says, “It blew my mind. From the very first song, I felt like someone had written a musical just for me.” New Line produced Urinetown in 2007. Miller says, “As soon as I read the Yeast Nation script and heard the songs, I knew we had to work on this. It’s going to be crazy amounts of fun.”
ABOUT NEW LINE THEATRE
New Line Theatre is a professional company dedicated to involving the people of the St. Louis region in the exploration and creation of daring, provocative, socially and politically relevant works of musical theatre. New Line was created back in 1991 at the vanguard of a new wave of nonprofit musical theatre just starting to take hold across the country. New Line has given birth to several world premiere musicals over the years and has brought back to life several shows that were not well served by their original New York productions. Altogether, New Line has produced 79 musicals since 1991, and the company has been given its own entry in the Cambridge Guide to American Theatre and the annual Theater World. New Line receives funding from the Regional Arts Commission and the Missouri Arts Council, a state agency.
For other information, visit New Line Theatre’s full-service website at www.newlinetheatre.com. All programs are subject to change.
New Line’s current season continues with Zorba, March 2-25; The Sweet Smell of Success, June 1-24; and Out on Broadway: The Third Coming, Aug. 3-19. Tickets are available through MetroTix, 314-534-1111 or MetroTix.com.